Girdles, or belts, were worn by both men and women in the Medieval period. From the mid-fifteenth century, fashionable women wore broad and short girdles like this one high on the ribcage, over a houppelande, a full-skirted, long-sleeved outer robe. Girdles owned by the wealthy were made of fine and costly fabrics and often embellished with silver or gold decorative fittings along their length. The elaborately-worked buckles and strap ends were usually decorated with enamels or niello, often with a family coat-of-arms and/or inscriptions. The textile used for this girdle incorporates gilded silver threads, and would have been woven by a single weaver working on a small tablet loom. The buckle and strap end appear to be gold, but in fact are gilded base metal, with applied plaques of enamelled and engraved silver. This is a rare example of a fifteenth-century cloth-of-gold girdle complete with its original mounts.